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The beautiful Thai island of Koh Samui has long been a popular tourist destination – it's a place for sun-soaked honeymoons, beachside weddings, and backpacking adventures. Though the island boasts a number of busy resort towns and night-time hangouts, it’s also home to many secluded natural areas and quiet stretches of palm-fringed beach. Koh Samui is a truly special holiday destination, no matter what kind of trip you’re looking to enjoy.
One airport on Koh Samui operates domestic and international flights. Samui International Airport (USM) is located to the northeast of the island in Bo Phut, just a short distance from Bangrak Pier, one of the island’s key ferry terminals. The airport is privately owned, having been built by the airline Bangkok Airways, and is notable for its attractive open-air design. One thing to be aware of when travelling into Koh Samui Airport is that a visa may be necessary. If you are arriving with a UK passport, you can stay in Thailand for 30 days, but a visa will be required for visits that are any longer.
Domestic destinations served by Samui International Airport include Bangkok, Chiang Mai and Phuket, but the airport also operates flights to and from Singapore, Malaysia and China. If you are not travelling from within Thailand, or another East Asian location served by the airport, you will have to book a connecting flight. The good news is that this can be done easily using Expedia’s multi-flight booking tool. It’s possible to book business class flights with airlines such as Bangkok Airways and SilkAir, but there are also many economy options available.
When you arrive into Koh Samui Airport, you have several options for travelling on to your destination. You can arrange a private or shared airport transfer, or hire your own car. Once you have arrived, you may want to hire a motorcycle or bicycle from your hotel, although you can also use the local taxis. Several ferry services also run from Koh Samui to nearby islands and other destinations. From Koh Samui, you can take the ferry to Koh Phangan, Koh Tao, and the mainland town of Surat Thani. It’s also possible to book connecting trips over land. For instance, you can take the ferry to Donsak Pier and then catch a connecting bus to Krabi on the western coast.
There’s plenty to keep you busy during your stay on Koh Samui. Sun-seekers should make time to relax on Bangrak Beach, while sightseeing addicts will want to pay a visit to Wat Phra Yai, the island’s “Big Buddha”. Beautiful Namuang Waterfall is also popular with tourists, as is the stunning Ang Thong National Marine Park, an archipelago of small islands often featured in film & TV. If you have time, you may find it worthwhile to visit Koh Samui’s neighbouring islands – if not solely for the beautiful views to be enjoyed from the ferry!